Art in Sperryville, real and imagined

By any definition, Sperryville, is small. Population, 352. Zero traffic lights. But in one respect, this historic village is a giant: Art.

With the opening of “The Third Dimension — Real and Imagined” at Cottage Curator, Sperryville is emerging as the arts center of the Piedmont.

Curated by Jackie Bailey Labovitz, “The Third Dimension” spotlights paintings, sculptures, photography, baskets, ceramics, glass, fiber and fine studio furniture. All are for sale.

Art Courtesy image

Works by more than 30 artists now fill the stunning space of Cottage Curator.

These artists hail from as far away as Arkansas in the south and Massachusetts in the north, but more than a third live in Virginia’s Piedmont. Visitors to major museums will recognize many of the names.

Among the artists are eight from Rappahannock County. They are: Kathy Chumley, Barbara Heile, Jim Ramsay (paintings); Nol Putnam (sculpture); Jackie Bailey Labovitz, Matthew Black (photography); Dabney Kirchman (fiber); and Lynn Pittinger (furniture).

Cottage Curator is adjacent to the Old Schoolhouse off Lee Highway. A former annex to the school, the gallery has been redone to maximize natural light. Visitors will be in awe of the interior beauty where the desks of third- and fourth-graders once sat.

“The Third Dimension” is Labovitz’s second exhibition at Cottage Curator, but far from her first efforts at art curating. She spent most of her career amassing a portfolio of significant art collections installed in major corporate facilities and U.S. embassies worldwide. Two of those collections now reside in the permanent collection at the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

With Virginia native Labovitz at the helm, Cottage Curator assists residential clients with the purchase and placement of works by local and nationally recognized fine art and craft artists, including her own.

In addition to curating the works of others, Labovitz is an accomplished artist herself. She focuses on often-overlooked subjects — tiny native plants and insects, for example — from a straight-on eye level.

As a curator she is known as an emissary for American artists and bringing their work to light.

The impressive artworks at “The Third Dimension” are certain to bring visitors into a new way of thinking and looking at the world around them — a new dimension to their lives.

Not a bad achievement for little Sperryville.

Cottage Curator

12018A Lee Highway, Sperryville, Va. 22740

Hours: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday through Sunday; other days by appointment

Websites: and 

Email: or 

Phone: 540-773-2700

Admission: Free

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